Marshall Kirkpatrick has a post up at Read/Write Web about a relatively new blog-tracking and aggregation/filter site called Blogcosm, in which the creator of the service, a veteran geek named Scott Lawton — who claims to have been around even before Dave Winer invented blogging (which is just crazy talk) — talks about how he’s gunning for Gabe Rivera’s Techmeme.

I’m going to give Mr. Lawton the benefit of the doubt, because I’m a nice guy, but I have to say that his site competing with Techmeme.com is like me competing in a bike race with Lance Armstrong. At the moment, Blogcosm is a haphazard collection of blog info and rankings taking from other sites such as Technorati (which it might be able to compete with, given how far Technorati has fallen in the past year or so).

As for the design of Blogcosm.com — well, let’s just say that Techmeme may not be anything much to look at, but next to Blogcosm it looks like something that came out of Apple’s design lab. I mean, damn. I’ve seen sites that were designed using Microsoft’s PageMaker from 1998 that looked better. I agree that design isn’t everything (what we might call the craigslist philosophy), but still. It made my eyes hurt.

I think Techmeme is safe for awhile.


Please see my exchange with Scott in the comments below.

About the author

Mathew 2430 posts

I'm a Toronto-based senior writer with Fortune magazine, and my favorite things to write about are social technology, media and the evolution of online behavior

2 Responses to “Blogcosm: Techmeme can rest easy”
  1. who claims to have been around even before Dave Winer invented blogging (which is just crazy talk)

    Hey, you’re supposed to be one of the good guys of the blogosphere! That’s certainly not what I claimed, nor is it what Marshall wrote.

    Also, I wasn’t “pitching” Marshall with a set of talking points, we were just chatting at the Expo. I’m not sure that the history of how I got into blogging is all that interesting, so only a subset made it into the post. Briefly: prior to blogging, Dave Winer created great products such as ThinkTank and MORE (outlining) and Frontier (Mac scripting). I was pretty active in the Frontier community for many years … and thus had a front-row seat to the blogging ideas and tools that Dave (and others) did before “Radio Userland” and Weblogs.com. Brent Simmons (who went on to create NetNewsWire) was also an early Frontier scripter.

    talks about how he’s gunning for Gabe Rivera’s Techmeme.

    Er, except that’s not what I said at all! Marshall created a nice attention-getting headline, but don’t let that throw you off. (With your newspaper background, surely you could teach us all a thing or two about headlines….) Please go back and read the quote.

    Blogcosm launched in August with the barest subset of what we have planned. You know, “ship early and often” and all that. We continue to add more data and features in our effort to build a resource that’s different than anything we’ve seen. Sure, Technorati and others could have done so over the years, but they haven’t.

  2. Am I one of the good guys of the blogosphere, Scott? That’s nice to know — I should get a white hat :-)

    Seriously though, that comment about being around since before Dave invented blogging was actually meant to be a joke (and more at Dave’s expense than yours). Sorry if it didn’t come off that way.

    Maybe I over-reacted to the “taking on Techmeme” tone of Marshall’s post — and you are quite right that I have been on the receiving end of misinterpreted headlines more than once, so I know what that is like.

    In any case, I apologize if my post came off as snotty. I think competition is good, and I wish you the best of luck with Blogcosm. I will be watching with interest.

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